Friday, October 8, 2010

"Nobody better lay a finger on my Butterfinger"...Brownies

One of the best parts of Halloween?

The candy. 

Hands down.

Costumes are cool and all, but it's the abundance of candy that really makes me giddy.  Isle after isle filled with bags of candy... its like sweet tooth heaven!

We don't even get trick or treaters, but I still buy at least 2 large bags of candy "just in case."

For whatever reason, Butterfingers call to me around this time of year. I know, I know they're available all year long...but there's just something about that crisp-ity crunch-ity peanut buttery candy that just speaks to me every October.

We had a barbecue at work this week and I, of course, was tasked to bring dessert.  I wanted to make brownies and then I remembered the Butterfinger Cocoa Mix that I saved from Mountain Man's cabinets when we were moving him out here.  After a quick trip to the grocery for some extra Butterfingers I went to whipping up a batch of the best brownies I've ever made.

The brownie base is Jen's (from Beantown Baker) 'go to' brownie recipe. The texture and flavor of these brownies are fantastic.. I now know why she returns to this recipe every time.

Best Brownie Recipe
from Beantown Baker originally from King Arthur's Flour

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups cocoa
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder* optional
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups flour
2 cups chocolate chips* optional

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease 11x13 baking pan.
In small sauce pan, melt butter. Remove from heat and add sugar. Return to heat and stir for about 2 minutes before removing again (this is what gives the brownies their shine).
Transfer butter mixture to a large bowl. Mix in cocoa, salt, baking powder, cocoa mix* and vanilla.
Whisk in eggs one at a time until smooth.
Slowly add flour and mix until just combined.
Fold in Butterfinger bits.
Pour into greased pan and transfer to oven. Bake for 30 minutes.
Allow to cool before serving. 
If possible cool overnight. (this is something I just learned, but it actually made a big difference!)

Butterfinger variety
swap 2 cups of chocolate chips for 2 cups chopped Butterfingers (possibly 3 cups)
2 packages of Butterfinger Cocoa Mix 

I brought a majority of the brownies to the office, but I wanted to keep a few at home for a photo shoot after work. While munching on these at the end of the barbecue, I was a little disappointed with the lack of Butterfinger flavor.. the brownies were delicious, but I was really hoping for more of a peanut butter pop.

And then I read about making your own Butterfinger candy and I couldn't believe my eyes. 

Candy corn + peanut butter = Butterfinger filling

You're probably thinking the same thing I did... what?! no way!? how does that even work?

Don't worry. I'm still trying to figure this out...but trust me, it works.

So after their original photo shoot, we did a little wardrobe change. While dinner was in the oven, I tried this homemade version of Butterfinger filling with the intention of spreading a layer on top of the brownies and then covering them with a final layer of milk chocolate.

I am still trying to wrap my head around how candy corn and peanut butter make this filling, but it was a wonderful addition to an already fabulous brownie.

Seriously, four brownies just weren't time I'm going to slather the entire batch with this Butterfinger topping.

Oh and in case you were wondering...
Butterfinger Filling
equal parts candy corn and peanut butter (1:1)
Melt candy corn in microwave. Stopping to stir every 20 seconds until completely melted.
Stir in peanut butter and mix until smooth. 

Happy Baking!